Dr. Darcia Narvaez is Professor of Psychology at the University of Notre Dame.
Darcia Narvaez (dar-sha narv-eyes) was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Her father, Richard Narvaez (born in Jayuya, Puerto Rico), was a professor of Spanish linguistics at the University of Minnesota, and she spent part of her childhood in Puerto Rico, Mexico, Colombia, and Spain. Her first job was with the local public television station (KTCA) in St. Paul, Minnesota, as a 7-and 8-year-old: she was the voice of the puppet, Maria, on the Spanish-language-teaching program "Ya Hablamos Español", watched by tens of thousands of children in elementary school classrooms in Minnesota in the 1960s.
She subsequently worked as a church musician (organist, choir director), classroom and private music teacher (Brent International School in Baguio City, Philippines; King of Kings School in Roseville, Minnesota), middle school Spanish teacher (The Blake School in Hopkins, Minnesota), and business owner. She also earned a master of divinity degree from Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota, and is a published poet.
She earned her PhD in educational psychology from the University of Minnesota in 1993, and joined the College of Education and Human Development there in the department of curriculum and instruction and the department of educational psychology. In 2000, she joined the department of psychology at the University of Notre Dame.
She was married to James Rest until he died in 1999. She is married to Daniel Lapsley, a professor of psychology at the University of Notre Dame.
She was the design leader of the Minnesota Community Voices and Character Education project funded with $1 million by the US Department of Education during 1998-2002. She was co-author with James Rest, Steve Thoma and Muriel Bebeau of the widely cited book, Postconventional Moral Thinking
She was one of five psychologists to be invited to speak at the White House's Conference on Character in Community in 2002.
Her work emphasizes moral development over the lifespan, and the interaction between implicit and explicit processes in moral functioning. She emphasizes the importance of early experience in shaping moral capacities. Her current work is on the evolved developmental niche for young children (natural birth, extensive on-demand breastfeeding, constant touch, caregiver responsiveness, free play, multiple adult caregivers and extensive positive social support) and is studying the effects of early life experience on moral development both in the US and in China.
A recent emphasis in her work involves indigenous wisdom, starting with her 2013 paper, "The 99%--Development and socialization within an evolutionary context: Growing up to become 'A good and useful human being.'” She organized a conference in September 2016 called "Sustainable Wisdom: Integrating Indigenous Knowhow for Global Flourishing" (videos of speakers available at YouTube).
Her blog, "Moral Landscapes," at Psychology Today has over 11 million hits (as of mid 2017) with the most popular post being "Dangers of 'Crying it Out'" with over 2.6 million hits [].
She is a fellow of the American Psychological Association and of the American Educational Research Association. She is former editor-in-chief of the Journal of Moral Education.
Her book, Neurobiology and the Development of Human Morality: Evolution, Culture and Wisdom, won the 2015 William James Book Award from Division I of the American Psychological Association. It also won the 2017 Expanded Reason Award.[]
Several of her books have won awards from the special interest group, Moral Development and Education, at the American Educational Research Association: Postconventional Moral Thinking (2000 (which also won the book award from AERA Division I); Moral Development, Self and Identity (2007); Handbook of Moral and Character Education (2009); Personality, Character and Identity: Explorations in Moral Psychology (2011);Neurobiology and the Development of Human Morality: Evolution, Culture and Wisdom (2016).
- Narvaez, D. (2016). "Embodied Morality: Protectionism, Engagement and Imagination". London, UK: Palgrave Macmillan.
- Annas, J., Narvaez, D., & Snow, N. (Eds.) (2016). "Developing the Virtues: Integrating Perspectives". New York: Oxford University Press.
- Narvaez, D., Braungart-Rieker, J., Miller-Graff, L., Gettler, L., & Hastings, P. (2016). "Contexts for Young Child Flourishing: Evolution, Family, and Society." New York: Oxford University Press.
- Narvaez, D. (2014). "Neurobiology and the development of human morality: Evolution, culture and wisdom". New York: W.W. Norton.
- Narvaez, D., Valentino, K., Fuentes, A., McKenna, J., & Gray, P. (2014). "Ancestral Landscapes in Human Evolution: Culture, Childrearing and Social Wellbeing". New York: Oxford University Press.
- Nucci, L. P., Narvaez, D., & Krettenauer, T. (Eds.) (2014). Handbook of Moral and Character Education, Second Ed.. New York: Routledge.
- Narvaez, D., Panksepp, J., Schore, A., & Gleason, T. (Eds.) (2013). Evolution, Early Experience and Human Development: From Research to Practice and Policy. New York: Oxford University Press.
- Narvaez, D., & Lapsley, D.K. (Eds.) (2009). Personality, Identity, and Character: Explorations in Moral Psychology. New York: Cambridge University Press.
- Narvaez, D., & Endicott, L. (2009). Nurturing Character in the Classroom, EthEx Series, Book 1: Ethical Sensitivity. Notre Dame, IN: ACE Press.
- Narvaez, D. & Bock, T. (2009). Nurturing Character in the Classroom, EthEx Series, Book 2: Ethical Judgment. Notre Dame, IN: ACE Press.
- Narvaez, D. & Lies, J. (2009). Nurturing Character in the Classroom, EthEx Series, Book 3: Ethical Motivation. Notre Dame, IN: ACE Press.
- Narvaez, D. (2009). Nurturing Character in the Classroom, EthEx Series, Book 4: Ethical Action. Notre Dame, IN: ACE Press.
- Nucci, L. P., & Narvaez, D. (Eds.) (2008). Handbook of Moral and Character Education. New York: Routledge.
- Power, F. C., Nuzzi, R. J., Narvaez, D., Lapsley, D. K., & Hunt, T. C. (Eds.). (2008). Moral education: A handbook (Vols. 1-2). Westport, CT: Praeger.
- Lapsley, D.K., & Narvaez, D. (Eds.) (2004). Moral development, self and identity: Essays in honor of Augusto Blasi. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
- Rest, J. R., Narvaez, D., Bebeau, M., & Thoma, S. (1999). Postconventional moral thinking: A neo-Kohlbergian approach. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
- Rest, J.R. & Narvaez, D. (Eds.) (1994). Moral development in the professions: Psychology and applied ethics. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.
Recent peer-reviewed papers
- Narvaez, D., Lapsley, D. K.,Hagele, S., & Lasky, B. (2006). Moral chronicity and social information processing: Tests of a social cognitive approach to the moral personality. Journal of Research in Personality, 40, 966–985.
- Narvaez, D.(2008). Triune ethics: The neurobiological roots of our multiplemoralities. New Ideas in Psychology, 26, 95-119.
- Narvaez,D. (2010). Moral complexity: The fatal attraction of truthiness and the importance of mature moral functioning.Perspectives on Psychological Science, 5(2), 163-181.
- Narvaez,D. (2010). The embodied dynamism of moral becoming. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 5(2), 185-186.
- Narvaez, D. (2010). The emotional foundations of high moral intelligence. In B. Latzko & T. Malti (Eds.). Children’s Moral Emotions and Moral Cognition:Developmental and Educational Perspectives, New Directions for Child and Adolescent Development, 129, 77-94. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
- Narvaez, D.,Gleason, T., & Mitchell, C. (2010). Moral virtue and practical wisdom:Theme comprehension in children, youth and adults. Journal of Genetic Psychology, 171(4),1-26.
- Narvaez, D. (2012)." Moral neuroeducation from early life through the lifespan." Neuroethics, 5(2), 145-157. doi:10.1007/s12152-011-9117-5
- Narvaez,D., Wang, L., Gleason, T., Cheng, A., Lefever, J., & Deng, L. (2013).The Evolved Developmental Niche andsociomoral outcomes in Chinese three-year-olds. European Journal of Developmental Psychology, 10(2), 106-127.
- Narvaez,D., Gleason, T., Wang, L., Brooks, J.,Lefever, J., Cheng, A., & Centers for the Prevention of Child Neglect (2013). The Evolved Development Niche: Longitudinal Effects of Caregiving Practices on Early Childhood Psychosocial Development. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 28 (4),759–773. Doi: 10.1016/j.ecresq.2013.07.003
- Narvaez, D. (2016). Baselines for virtue. In J. Annas, D. Narvaez, & N. Snow (Eds.), Developing virtue: Integrating perspectives (pp. 14-33). . New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
- Four Arrows, & Narvaez, D. (2016). Reclaiming our indigenous worldview: A more authentic baseline for social/ecological justice work in education. In N. McCrary & W. Ross (Eds.), Working for social justice inside and outside the classroom: A community of teachers, researchers, and activists (pp. 93-112). In series, Social justice across contexts in education (S.J. Miller & L.D. Burns, Eds.). New York, NY: Peter Lang.
- Narvaez, D., Wang, L, & Cheng, A. (2016). Evolved Developmental Niche History: Relation to adult psychopathology and morality. Applied Developmental Science. https://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10888691.2015.1128835
- Christen, M., Narvaez, D., & Gutzwiller, E. (in press). Cultural moral progress despite biological moral decline? – An empirical and ethical investigation of the notion of “moral progress.” Ethical Theory and Moral Practice
- Hopper, D. (Producer). (2015, October 27). Academic Minute: Companionship Care. [Audio podcast]. Retrieved from: https://www.insidehighered.com
- Reagan, L. (Producer). (2016, January 9). Creating Sustainable Humans With Conscious Parenting: An Interview (at Kindred Media) [Audio podcast]. Retrieved from: http://kindredmedia.org/
- link http://discovery.mnhs.org/MN150/index.php?title=Don_Miguel_%28Howard_H._Hathaway%29
- Narvaez, D. (2010)."Moral complexity: The fatal attraction of truthiness and the importance of mature moral functioning." Perspectives on Psychological Science, 5(2), 163-181.
- Narvaez, D. (2008). "Triune ethics: The neurobiological roots of our multiple moralities." New Ideas in Psychology, 26, 95-119.
- . Narvaez, D., Panksepp, J., Schore, A., & Gleason, T. (Eds.) (2013). Evolution, Early Experience and Human Development: From Research to Practice and Policy. New York: Oxford University Press.
- Narvaez, D., Wang, L., Gleason, T., Cheng, A., Lefever, J., & Deng, L. (2013). "The Evolved Developmental Niche and sociomoral outcomes in Chinese three-year-olds." European Journal of Developmental Psychology, 10(2), 106-127.